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San Jose Sharks draft Sam Dickinson

The San Jose Sharks gambled by trading up in the draft, moving from 14 to 11 on Thursday and it paid off. The Sharks snagged one of the top defensemen in the draft, Sam Dickinson at pick 11. Dickinson was projected to go in the top ten and on some draft boards, the top five, so the fact that the Sharks managed to snag the London Knights’ defenseman at 11 feels like a steal.

Forwards went early in the draft

One of the most interesting things about the draft was how early the forwards went. It left the Sharks with two options at defense: Dickinson and San Diego kid Zeev Buium. Either would have been an exceptional selection at 11th overall.

Sam Dickinson, D – London Knights (OHL)

Height: 6-foot-3
Weight: 203 lbs.
Age/DOB: 18, June 7, 2006
Shoots: Left
London Knights (OHL): 68 games, 70 points (18 G, 52 A)

One has to think that the Sharks selected Dickinson because he had the size advantage. Dickinson is large at 6-foot-3, 203 pounds and he’s proved that the size isn’t a disadvantage, putting up 70 points in 68 games last season with the London Knights.

Dickinson played the backend on the Knights power play with Sharks prospect Kasper Halttunen playing sniper from the faceoff circle.

What the Sharks get in Dickinson

So, what do the Sharks get in Dickinson?

“I think his puck decisions and puck transporting has taken another step,” London associate general manager Rob Simpson told, “where he’s really able to read when the time is right to make a simple, quick outlet or when he needs to use his feet to get himself out of trouble. He doesn’t spend a lot of time in his own end and because of his breakouts, and understanding of the forechecks around the league, he’s had success.

“Sam has received regular time on special teams, is a key contributor on the penalty kill and one of the go-to guys on the power play. That obviously gives you a lot of confidence when you’re put in those situations, so I think those things have really helped him take a step this year.”

The Daily Faceoff’s Steven Ellis called Dickinson underrated.

“I think he’s thoroughly underrated by the average fan,” Ellis said. “A minute-muncher with the Knights, Dickinson can do a bit of everything. He’s calm with the puck, makes smart, quick decisions, and plays so well in transition.”

The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler says a good comparable for Dickinson is “a little Noah Hanifin, a little Moritz Seider.”

What’s next for Dickinson?

Dickinson has played three seasons in the OHL, two with the London Knights and one in the OJHL with the Aurora Tigers. He’ll likely be brought back to the Knights for another season and then he might have the opportunity to move up to the San Jose Barracuda.

Expect the London Knights to be just as competitive as they were last season and Dickinson will be a big part of it.

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